The Nets are back in Brooklyn and they still don’t have a head coach. Jacque Vaughn is the interim and Ime Udoka is the heir apparent… we think.
Marc Stein reported two days ago that there were “strong voices” urging Joe Tsai to “retreat” from hiring Udoka, who, of course, for sexual inappropriateness, is part of a “count of violations” of the Celtics Code, for behavior that owner Wyc Grousbeck put aside in September when a law firm filed its report on Udoka’s problems.
In the days following Steve Nash’s sacking, there were reports, notably from Adrian Wojnarowski and Shams Charania, that Udoka’s hiring was imminent, “on the brink,” as Woj said when he last discussed the issue last Friday. That didn’t happen and Stein’s reporting makes it appear that it didn’t, although there have been no reports of Net’s interest in any candidate other than perhaps Vaughn.
But the delay and Stein’s reporting make one wonder what’s going on behind the scenes. Meanwhile, both Newsday and the Post have written about the outstanding issues with Udoka.
In a column for Newsday, Barbara Barker writes that women’s groups have already criticized the Nets for even considering hiring Udoka:
In theory, it’s hard to believe the Nets would seriously consider hiring Udoka.
In reality, her season veered into the surreal a while back. It took the Nets eight days and two chilling press conferences to do the right thing and suspend Kyrie Irving for linking to an anti-Semitic film on his social media accounts. Is it really possible that they think they can fix one PR disaster with another? Could it be that it wasn’t enough to alienate her Jewish fans and now the nets are turning to the women?
Not only is it not right, it’s not a good deal.
Mark W. Sanchez, writing for the Post, points out how little we know about what happened in Boston.
So what do we know? Udoka suspended for violating Celtics rules; he was in a relationship, which may or may not have been consensual, with a co-worker; he made “undesirable” or “rude” comments to her, although the circumstances and content of those comments are being kept secret…
If the Nets believe Udoka is the answer to their problems on the pitch, they need to have a full explanation of what prompted the Celtics to take Udoka off the pitch. We don’t know what happened, but he can’t become the head coach of the Nets without publicly answering every question as to why he’s not the head coach of the Celtics anymore.
And just like the Irving situation, the commissioner’s office appears to be involved with more than one source telling NetsDaily that Adam Silver is among the “strong voices” speaking to Tsai.
How quickly could things be resolved? Nobody says. You have to keep at it.